PHILADELPHIA (AP) – People who are repeatedly caught driving under the influence in Pennsylvania are more likely than many other states to remain behind the wheel, a newspaper is reporting.
The Philadelphia Inquirer said Sunday Pennsylvania doesn’t mandate ignition interlock devices for first-time DUI cases, and doesn’t immediately suspend licenses of defendants who fail sobriety tests.
The paper says a 5-year-old court opinion means drivers must be convicted of DUI before being charged as a repeat offender.
Police can sometimes fail to charge driving suspended along with DUI, a charge that can significantly increase jail time.
The paper says Philadelphia prosecutors and judges are comparatively lenient with repeat offenders.
The Inquirer says somewhere between 2,000 and 6,000 people in Pennsylvania have four or more drunken driving convictions over the past 20 years.
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